Updated: Jun 26, 2020
Name: Rodri (Rodrigo)
Club: Manchester City
Role: Holding, Deep Playmaker
Share Price: £2.40
Who is Rodri?
The Spanish midfielder developed at Atletico as an academy prospect for 6 years before leaving for Villareal in 2013 on a free transfer. It took four years to establish himself as one of Spain's greatest teenage midfielders. During this period of development, Rodri obtained a business degree, living in a student hall of residence whilst playing in La Liga. Villareal performed well with Rodri on the books, never finishing below fifth with him as a first teamer. It eventually led to Atletico buying the youngster back in 2018 for around £22m, but they cashed out for a profit in just 12 months. In 2019, he was picked up by Manchester City for an eye-watering £63m - the citizens' most expensive signing on record.
Style of Play
Rodri was acquired by Man City as a long-term replacement of their veteran defensive midfielder Fernandinho. At 23 years old, Rodri offers outstanding vision and passing ability in combination with a physical presence. In a pivotal role in Guardiola's midfield, he's a perfect fit to contribute both defensively and to start their intricate buildup play. 92% pass completion in the Premier League, with an average of 77 passes per game - and one key pass - is highly respectable in a debut campaign.
In just his debut season in the Premier League, Rodri is ranked second in passes completed. He's also 6th in touches.
It's clear Rodri will be playing a key role in City's outfit going forward. He may not be leading in goals or assists, but the play revolves around him. There are few options in holding midfield for City to explore, and the £63m signing looks to have all the skills that Guardiola's looking for to retain his spot in the starting XI for the coming seasons.
Rodri sits in the sweet spot on the index. His age indicates youth without hype. He offers potential to grow whilst having proven he can play at the top. His price of £2.40 has plenty of room to grow, whilst offering little risk on the basis of his minutes and PB average. It's a low risk, low hype but great potential investment.
In terms of PB, Rodri has averaged 136 per game. Only one other midfielder on the index under 26 offers a PB average greater than 136 this season - Wylan Cyprien of OGC Nice. Premier League players with this PB criteria are Bruno Fernandes (164) and James Maddison (140) and Jack Grealish (120). Note - must have played more than 10 games.
When you consider PB Max, it becomes even more apparent that he's a potential PB winner.
He posted a score of 332 this season. No midfielder under 27 years old has bettered this across any league this season.
He took £0.04 for that effort but is yet to win another PB dividend this season. That said, his average is strong, and his role at City is more than influential. He has great potential to continue racking up good scores, despite not being on the right end of the build-up play that most consider most important.
Rodri's hard-contributions, goals and assists, are what put traders off most. 3 goals and 1 assist is not a tally many traders consider worth a second look. But to an educated trader, they understand there is more to the index than the obvious stats. Jadon Sancho has 17 goals and 17 assists this term. His PB? 316 max and 125 average. Both lower than Rodri. In play-dividends therefore are a low investment opportunity in Rodri, but PB is not compromised. Less obvious soft-contributions to PB points such as pass completed (1 point), aerial dual wins (2 points) and ball recoveries (3 points) rack up a good average score for the young Spaniard.
The media opportunity when investing in Rodri is uncertain. Despite being the most expensive signing in City's history, the Spanish International has not won a single media dividend. His character is not one of controversy, whilst his maturity on the field carries through to the press. He's simply not of interest to English media outlets. When you combine his persona and lack of highlight plays, it soon become apparent Rodri is not likely to attract cameras. It's an unfortunate aspect, but it's the nature of his position. The second way to attract media is the short-term attraction of transfer hype. Now, more than ever, it's apparent that traders can make lucrative profits from flipping the names in the media linked to big European clubs. Rodri only signed last summer on a contract running up to 2024. As mentioned, he's a vital cog in City's system. For as long as Guardiola's in charge, Rodri will be playing football at the top of the Premier League. It's unlikely he'll be transferring unless it's for personal reasons. No MB to be won on this matter.
If you're looking for a low risk, long-term PB midfielder, Rodri offers excellent scores at a great value. Young yet established, over the next three years an investment is likely to yield PB dividends whilst holding a steady price, or potential price increase. He's not likely to rocket in value given he's older than the wonderkids and has no transfer links on the horizon, but it's unlikely that traders will be selling up anytime soon given his successful debut season. A few more offensive contributions could see Rodri move north of £3. However, years of further developing defensively could result in a profile similar to that of Casemiro, 28, who's PB is very similar to Rodri but has a price of just £0.76 on Football Index. It wouldn't be entirely surprising to see a dip in value if Rodri fails to make an impact in the English media in the coming few seasons, despite his good PB profile. He'll have to be in the eye of the trader to ensure his value holds strong. A couple of PB wins or highlights could see his value reflect a similar price to that of many great midfielders.